Saturday, 14 July 2012

I promised Sheep. I do not Disappoint.

Wandering around the cliffs and bluffs near Omaha beach, we decided to try and find the airstrip that the allies put down. As soon as they were able to get heavy equipment on the beach, they used it to plow flat a rudimentary airstrip on a plateau on the cliff top so they wouldn't have to fly all the way back to England to land. A huge advantage on the allied front, especially for wounded planes that wouldn't make it back across the channel.

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Up the hill we went, through much brambles and thorns and overgrowth. We didn't find out until we got there that there was an easier path up...a road. How did we miss that?

We got to the top, to spectacular views, and we found a plaque that let us know this verdant farmland was indeed the place we were looking for.

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And suddenly, Sheep!

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The airstrip is now a sheep pasture. Really!

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The little ones are Cheviots. I'm not sure what the black faced sheep were. Bleu du Maine maybe? They had gorgeous, crimpy thick fleece that made me swoon a little.

I don't know, I couldn't hear what the farmer was saying over the roar of the diesel generator that they were using to power the clippers.

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I just happened to show up for shearing day. How lucky was that? They had a huge bale of wool filled with the mornings' work.

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My French isn't rich enough to ask details without resorting to profanity, but they seem to not dock the tails here. It was kind of funny to see long-tailed sheep, as it's common (and somewhat controversial) in the States to snip the tails off when they are lambs. Cleaner, easier to deal with, and none of the dreaded flystrike issues.

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They were nervously eyeing the shearing process, but seemed like the kind of happy sheep that get lots of open pasture and an ocean view.

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